Thoughts on the banning of Blockchain games on steam, and Blockchain games in General.

in Hive Gaming3 months ago

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Okay, it's going to seem like I”m a ways off from talking about games, but I think I need to say a lot of this first to kind of make a point. So bear with me here.

Crypto and blockchains are interesting topics to discuss. On one hand, once you start looking into the communities, you will see a wealth of discussion of various block-chains, their advantages, potential future applications, as well as the potential to make a lot of money as you see the prices go up. While a lot of it is reflective of Bitcoin, its fluctuation is usually being felt across all crypto, each block-chain does seem to have its own life as well. It really is a thriving community and ecosystem that I think is going to be relevant in the larger world as a whole.

At the same time, I think there is something really easy to overlook when discussing Crypto in general. I doubt that if you were to poll all the people who are even capable of trade in Crypto (People of countries with solid enough internet connections basically), that you would even reach a percent in the double digits who even understand what is going on in terms of crypto. I would be shocked if 5% of them even had the slightest clue of what a blockchain was beyond having just heard the term at some point.

Focusing on Bitcoin for a minute, these things are supposed to be a currency. But there are so few places that you can even go to buy things with it that almost no one outside of these communities is going to see actual use for it beyond selling it when the price is high, so just another kind of stock. I do think this will change as time marches on, but I think mainstream usage of Crypto is a long, long way off, despite the value it has.

Now let's talk about the reaction to Steam taking Age of Rust off its storefront, specifically on Twitter. I know this isn't reflective of the crypto community at large, but it is a part of it and I think should be addressed. I don't want to highlight specific accounts, but looking through the replies to Age of Rusts account is possibly some of the cringiest things I have read in a while. Things like 'I can't even play a game anymore if I'm not getting NFT's' or 'Why should I even buy games anymore when I can make money on Block-chain games' and that 'Steam is so archaic, they took a huge hit to there brand with this one.'

I will refer you back to my original claim of how many people even know what's going on with a blockchain. Of the people who play games, and the people who both know and give a fuck about blockchains, what percentage of those people are going to turn away from steam for this? Steam is not a blockchain, it is not a blockchain platform, and it has never been a platform that was used to make any kind of actual profit for its users. For all the people claiming that Steam is going to take any kind of hit from this, you are delusional. This is not going to have any noticeable effect on steam now, or in the years to come. Steam will either thrive or fail independently of its exclusion of Blockchain gaming.

As for the future of Blockchain gaming itself, I think it is even farther out from being any kind of mainstream acceptance than using Crypto as an actual currency is. While those in crypto who think Steam is so backward and archaic and going to fail for this are likely a minority, those who talk about playing blockchain games as a way to earn make up a bit more of the community, though it's hard to say how much that is. This bit is for you guys.

Do you not understand what the vast majority of gamers play games for? We play games because they are fun. After all, we want a break from reality or any kind of similar reason. We are not here to make money, we are here to enjoy ourselves. If you advertise your game as a way to make money by playing, you aren't pulling from the gamer audience, you are pulling from the crypto audience. When a core principle of your game is how you can make money off it, people aren't going to be playing for fun, they are going to be playing to make money. This stops being a fun game and starts being a side hustle to make money. The core principles of what goes into making a game are important, they will affect the entire experience either negatively or positively, regardless of how well made the mechanics are. So long as Blockchain games are being made with the idea that the players can profit, that will have a detrimental effect on the quality of the product as a game.

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And since I am here posting this on a hive blockchain, I will talk Splinterlands. Looking past the game's selling point on its own site, (at least one of the most prominent ones, is that the cards have more value because I already talked about my thoughts on that). Instead, I'm going to talk a bit about the game itself, specifically that the actual game-play is automated. Once you understand the rules, you just set the cards you want and how you want and the game just goes. On the very block-chain I myself post on, this appears to be the biggest and most popular game. In a world I see people talking about blockchain gaming taking over, you give me a game that looks more akin to AFK heroes, a game that promotes itself as a game you don't even half to play. The audience your game is targeting isn't your typical gamers (Though I won't deny a degree of Crossover). As it stands now, blockchain gaming is going to have an effect on the rest of the gaming industry like things like AFK has, almost none.

That said, I am not going to just brush aside the very concept of blockchain gaming, but instead say you really shouldn't be looking to the rest of the gaming world to come to join you. Crypto itself is a niche, and within that square, blockchain gaming is a niche. If you are coming into this thinking that blockchain gaming is going overtake gaming as a whole, you are going to be mistaken, just like when people were saying Mobile gaming was going to take over. It didn't, at all. It's not even close. What it did has become its own thing with its separate audience.

I want to be clear that I am not against blockchain games as an idea, nor do I think they are going to fail. What I am saying is that this issue with Steam isn't going to be a big deal either for traditional gaming or block-chain gaming, they are two different beasts. Stop worrying about what a different market than you are doing, and just focus on what makes your stuff work for your niche, and find success there.

Also, fuck those people who don't see the value in gaming if they aren't getting anything from it, they clearly do not understand what gaming even is. I realize how in the minority that group probably is, but god reading that annoyed the hell out of me.

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I personally just feel like Steam is playing it safe for now with the blockchain games. With the potential of rug pulls and scams that we've seen before they simply don't want to hurt their brand if someone pulls a big one. At least that's just my thoughts.